Cable sensors control roll and pitch flight simulator movement
Test & Measurement
To improve the performance and reliability of the roll and pitch axes for its Cessna C172 ‘Skyhawk’ simulator, Happy Landings Simulations GmbH has replaced gear mechanics and rotary potentiometers with SP1 and SM1 draw wire position sensors from Variohm EuroSensor.
As directly coupled measurement devices, the draw-wire solution lessens the potential for lost motion in the control system and enhances the control sensitivity and ultimately enhancing the flying simulation experience. The SP1 series draw wire sensor offers a tough and compact position measurement solution for up to 1.27m travel while the miniature SM1 has the capacity for even more compact installation for travel lengths to 0.63m. For this application, both sensors are configured for voltage divider output from integral potentiometers with a measurement resolution which is infinite and repeatability in the region of 0.5% full scale. A sturdy nylon-coated stainless steel cable joins the moving load to the potentiometric sensor through a spring-loaded winch mechanism. Working life is typically more than 2.5 million cycles. Highlighting durable polycarbonate housings with multiple mounting points, they are simple to install and do not need a perfect alignment.
Draw wire sensors can also be specified with IP67 protective housings for use in severe outdoor environments where long travel, high accuracy linear position measurement is needed. A broad range is offered by the company with optional mechanical fixings, selectable voltage and current outputs as well as CANopen, SSI and other Fieldbus interfaces if needed. These sensors are well proven for positioning and linear measurement tasks in critical applications such as high-performance car throttle controls, elevating bridge and crane controls, heavy industrial equipment, agricultural and construction machinery.